Wednesday, March 23, 2011

"Dropout Factories"

By Olabisi Orisamolu

I found this article on the CNN website about certain high schools being “dropout factories.” As many people know, the dropout rate for wards 7 and 8 is about 50 percent, so the high schools in these wards would fall under this category.  The article talks about Vice President Joe Biden’s goal of having the greatest proportion of college graduates in the world by 2020. While I think it’s good that people are looking to improve high schools in rural and urban areas, I think the optimism expressed in this article is premature.

 It is true that the quality of education received in high school has a positive correlation to the proportion of students that go on to college. However the way to fix the problem is to get to the root of it. It is harder for high schools to help kids get into college when kids have been performing below the national standard for years. Therefore, before we can address the problems in high schools, we must look at the problems in middle schools and elementary schools. They key to success in education is a solid foundation of learning which is built at a young age.